Adobe’s Employee Networks make an impact in 2021

A collage of Adobe employees taking part in a variety of events celebrating diversity and inclusion and #AdobeForAll.

The challenges throughout 2020 and 2021, including the global pandemic and racial injustice incidents, forced leaders to rethink how they connect and motivate their colleagues. During this period of uncertainty and disruption, Adobe’s employee network members were instrumental in building community and driving progress for underrepresented communities with cultural moment celebrations, opportunities to learn and grow, and support for non-profit organizations.

Through the dedication of Adobe’s employee network executive sponsors and nearly 200 executive chairs and site leaders, more than one third of employees globally participate in one or more of our eight employee networks, helping to strengthen our Adobe For All vision in 2021.

As we conclude the year, we celebrate our employees who lead and participate in our employee networks and recognize all that they do to support underrepresented communities and help Adobe build a more inclusive environment. Read on for our 2021 highlights.

Asian and Pacific Islander community

The Asian/Pacific Islander at Adobe (APIA) employee network is committed to driving professional development opportunities, amplifying awareness of diverse API cultures, and strengthening ties with all communities. For Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the network hosted activities around the theme, Rising Together, to support, equip, and empower employees. This included an event with perspectives shared from employees Bilin Su and Melisa Im, and a fireside chat with Phil Wang, co-founder of Wong Fu Productions. With the rise in anti-Asian sentiment and violence, APIA helped support employees and the community by hosting bystander intervention training sessions for allies, organizing healing sessions for members, supporting and influencing Adobe’s corporate donation to the Asian Law Caucus, and helping drive Adobe’s partnership with The Asian American Foundation. Throughout the year, the network also supported non-profit organizations including the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Stop AAPI Hate, and Southeast Asian Resource Action Center. Thank you to executive sponsor, Inyong Kim, and executive chair, Ty Lim, for their leadership in advocating for the APIA community.

Black and African-American community

The Black Employee Network (BEN) is committed to the success of Black and African-American talent at Adobe. Throughout the year, BEN drives programs to recruit, retain, develop, and connect the Black community and allies. To honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., BEN hosted a virtual performance with the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Ensemble, organized activities with the Museum of African Diaspora, and encouraged employees to volunteer. To honor Black History Month, BEN celebrated Black life, love and legacy, by showcasing artists and musicians, highlighting employee perspectives from Bria Alexander, Markeia Brox-Chester, Earnest Mack, and TJ Rhodes, and exploring the lives of Black figures throughout Europe’s history. In recognition of Juneteenth, BEN members participated on a panel sharing their insights and hosted a viewing party for “Amend: The Fight for America.” Throughout the year, BEN members participated in recruitment events, drove progress for the Taking Action Initiative, and supported non-profit organizations including 100 Black Men, Educational Video Center, Equal Justice Initiative, and Greene Scholars. Thank you to executive sponsor, Karen Robinson, and executive chairs, Kimberly LeDeaux and Brandon Baker, for their leadership in raising awareness for the Black experience.

Disability community

The Access at Adobe employee network is focused on supporting, raising awareness, and advocating for Adobe employees and family members with disabilities. The network strives to raise awareness of the reality employees with disabilities, injuries, and illnesses face at work.

For Disability Employment Awareness Month, the employee network hosted a talk with inclusion champion Andraéa LaVant, participated in a panel discussion on neurodiversity, and spotlighted stories from employees. For International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the network raised awareness on how to strengthen accessibility across Adobe’s workplace, products, and interaction with colleagues. Throughout the year employees including, Sipan Asatryan, Lauren Gardner, Jessica Michaels and Shubham Garg, shared their journeys living and thriving with disabilities; and members partnered with Adobe’s accessibility team on a survey to understand how the pandemic has impacted disability inclusion. The employee network supports non-profit organizations including the Disability Rights Fund, GiftAbled, Inclusion Scotland. Thank you to executive sponsor Govind Balakrishnan, and executive chair, Rani Mani, for their leadership in advancing disability inclusion.

Hispanic and Latinx community

The Hispanic and/or Latinx employee network at Adobe (HOLA) focuses on recruiting, developing, and retaining Hispanic and Latinx employees, while also increasing social awareness and community support. For Hispanic Heritage Month, HOLA organized events and activities around the theme, Esperanza: a celebration of Hispanic heritage and hope. This included an Aztec performance, a cooking demonstration, a guest speaker from the US National Guard, and perspectives shared by employees Santiago Pombo and Nass Martino. Highlighting the network’s global growth, HOLA hosted events recognizing the unique backgrounds of its members and their countries of origin including Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, Uruguay and others. Throughout the year HOLA supported non-profits including the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund; and partnered with organizations to support first-generation students from underrepresented communities. Thank you to executive sponsor, Ibe Ewalt, EMEA executive sponsor, Julian Garcia, and executive chair, Antonio Humphreys, for their leadership in bringing the HOLA community and allies together.

Indigenous Peoples community

Introduced in November 2021 during Native American Heritage Month, the Indigenous / First Nations at Adobe employee network focuses on enabling, empowering, and connecting Indigenous & First Nations people and allies. The network aims to increase awareness and advocacy, recruit and retain talent, amplify voices, and celebrate the heritage of Indigenous and First Nations people around the world.   Spanning across three continents, the network is bringing employees around the world together to support issues that are important to the community, educate allies, and spotlight the stories of employees like Natalie Contreras. The employee network supports non-profit organizations including the First Nations Development Institute, committed to strengthening Native American communities and economies. Thank you to executive sponsor, Heather Devine, for her leadership in launching this new employee network and bringing the community together.

LGBTQ+ community

The Pride at Adobe employee network brings together lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer+ colleagues and allies to actively make Adobe a more inclusive and supportive workspace. During Pride Month, network leaders spearheaded a series of events around the theme, Glow Up, Show Up & Lift Up, to celebrate, build community, and put advocacy into action. This was inclusive of intersectional speakers, including transgender veterans and the moving spoken word poetry of Paul Tran. Pride also partnered with Adobe’s CSR team in raising over $120,000 for organizations advancing LGBTQ+ rights globally through a competition between Adobe leaders. Throughout the year, Pride supported non-profit organizations including AsylumConnect, OutRight Action, TGEU, and Transgender Law Center; came together on Transgender Day of Visibility and World Aids Day; and expanded perspectives through thoughtful discussions about identity and employee stories with Charlotte Malan and Rod Alligood. Thank you to executive sponsor, David Lauder-Walker, and executive chair, Shannon Brown, for their leadership in raising awareness of issues impacting LGBTQ+ people and their families.

Veteran community

The Veterans at Adobe (VEN) employee network works to support military Veterans and their families and improve how they are perceived in society. In 2021 VEN raised awareness of the experiences and skills Veterans bring to the workplace, provided career counseling to Veterans transitioning to corporate careers, and hosted a panel discussion reflecting on the impact 9/11 had on their personal and professional lives. VEN members Paul Peterson and Suzanne Wagstaff also shared their personal stories to help expand perspectives around military service. Throughout the year VEN supported community organizations including the Armed Forces Covenant, the British Legion, Fisher House, the USO, and Vets in Tech. VEN members also collaborated with the non-profit Honoring Our Veterans to showcase Veterans’ creativity through photography created using Adobe creative tools. Thank you to executive sponsor, Mark Lipscomb, and executive chair, Carol Staub, for their leadership in championing the value Veterans bring to the workplace.

Women community

The Women at Adobe employee network seeks to attract and develop women and allies and to create an environment that empowers every woman to define and achieve her own success. The network implemented a new leadership structure enabling greater scale and global impact; and creating leadership opportunities across the organization. In recognition of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, the network hosted a global celebration featuring the talent and creativity of women from around the world. Network members and allies united around the theme, Raise Her Voice, and employee storytellers including Katherine Hartley, Renae Fisher, and Monika Salzbrunn, shared their personal journeys. Throughout the year, the network led a recognition program highlighting achievements across the company, sponsored a 6-month director-level mentorship program, and supported non-profit organizations including Equality Now and Women for Women International. Thank you to executive sponsor Ashley Still, and executive chairs, Renae Fisher, Katy Goodrich, and Kim-Anh Nguyen, for their leadership in helping women at Adobe be successful.

By connecting people globally, recognizing meaningful anniversaries, and raising awareness around important issues, employee networks made a significant impact on Adobe’s culture and business in 2021. In addition to building communities and shifting employee sentiment, network members and employees broadly donated more than $470,000 through employee donations and matching grants during cultural moments in support of 71 non-profit organizations. And employee networks helped drive more than 10,000 employee engagements during cultural moment events. This level of support and participation would never have been possible without our employee network leaders and members, and we are grateful for the impact they are making to create a sense of belonging at Adobe and help us be more successful.